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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2003 Sep 17;42(6):1091-7.

Beneficial pleiotropic vascular effects of rosuvastatin in two hypertensive models.

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Hypertension Research Laboratory, Ochsner Clinic Foundation, New Orleans, Louisiana 70121, USA.



The goal of this research was to study the effects of rosuvastatin on systemic and regional hemodynamics in two hypertensive rat models, one genetic, the other induced with inhibition of nitric oxide synthesis.


Rats naturally have low cholesterol levels that are generally unaffected by statin therapy, thus providing a good model for studying cardiovascular effects unrelated to lipid metabolism.


Male 20-week-old spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) were divided into five groups and given either vehicle or 1, 5, 10, and 20 mg/kg of rosuvastatin daily, by gavage, for 12 weeks. Wistar-Kyoto rats (WKY) were divided into four groups; the first received vehicle and the second rosuvastatin (20 mg/kg). The third and fourth groups were given N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine (L-NAME) (15 mg/kg/day) in drinking water, and the fourth group received rosuvastatin daily, 20 mg/kg for six weeks. At the end of the respective treatments, systemic and organ hemodynamics (radionuclide-labeled microspheres) and cardiovascular mass were determined in all rats.


Rosuvastatin reduced arterial pressure in SHR rats, but not in WKY/L-NAME rats. Total peripheral resistance decreased with rosuvastatin in both hypertensive models, whereas cardiac output increased with rosuvastatin in WKY/L-NAME rats. Neither cardiac nor aortic mass was changed. Regional hemodynamics improved with rosuvastatin in both hypertensive models, as evidenced by increased blood flows and decreased vascular resistances. No effect on plasma lipids was observed.


These results showed that rosuvastatin reduced arterial pressure in genetic hypertension and improved systemic and regional hemodynamics in both hypertensive models independently of cholesterol levels. Thus rosuvastatin improved systemic and regional hemodynamics by reducing vascular resistance.

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